LVMH SAYS MARX WILL HEAD LACROIX

PARIS — LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton said Thursday that Serge Marx, currently president of Bally France, will succeed Robert Bensoussan-Torres as president of the couture house Christian Lacroix.
The announcement confirms a report printed in WWD Sept. 18.
Bensoussan will leave Lacroix and move up to the holding company level of LVMH to be involved with operations and strategy.
He will be responsible for international development for the fashion and selective distribution companies of the LVMH group, LVMH explained.
Bensoussan could not be reached for comment Thursday.
The timing of the executive change was not specified in the LVMH statement, but reports in Paris said Marx and Bensoussan would take their new positions as early as November.
Marx, who also could not be reached Thursday, will take over Lacroix, and his role will be to “pursue the strategic development undertaken by the Christian Lacroix company,” LVMH said.
Marx joined the Bally footwear and apparel group in 1992, where he first ran the firm’s Swiss subsidiary and later moved to Bally France.
Prior to working with Bally, Marx held various sales and buying positions at ready-to-wear manufacturing and retailing concerns in Switzerland and in Italy.
Bensoussan, who has headed the Lacroix operation since 1993, has led the company into such new areas as the Bazar secondary line and the Jeans collection, along with linens and tabletop.
He also guided the opening of 30 freestanding Lacroix stores, both franchised and wholly owned.
While the fashion house has been a chronic money loser for LVMH, sources said that this year sales are growing and losses being cut. Volume of Lacroix is estimated to be about $80 million.

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